Ethel Jean (Rafter) Lynch, 93, died at a Chester nursing home on Thursday, Nov. 29, 2007.
Funeral services will be 11 a. m. Monday at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Rudyard. A luncheon will follow. Graveside services will be 3 p.m. Monday at the Highland Cemetery in Great Falls. Jean was born March 21, 1914, in Harlem to Richard and Ethel (Garrison) Rafter. When Jean was 2-years-old, the family moved to Denton where she was baptized in the Episcopal Church. She attended all 12 grades of school in Denton and graduated from high chool in 1932. She continued her education for a year at the Intermountain College in Helena, where she worked for her room-and-board for Professor George Gobel. Jean met Edward T. Lynch, at Geyser in 1934. The couple married on Nov. 23, 1935, in Great Falls. Their first two years were spent in Geyser where Ed worked on his parents’ ranch. They moved to Great Falls for the next 18 years. Ed was employed by Great Northern Railroad and Jean worked as a cook in the Great Falls school system. In 1955, the Lynches moved to the Rudyard community to a farming operation. They were together 42 years when Ed died in 1977. Jean remained in their Rudyard home until 2006, then began dividing her time at the homes of her two daughters, Bev and Lois. Last summer, she moved to the Wheat Country Estates in Chester. Jean injured her back in September, then transferred to the Liberty Medical Center. Jean had been an active member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church and the Women’s Circle. She enjoyed functions at the Rudyard Senior Center, especially playing cards and board games. She was an exceptional homemaker and a good cook. Jean was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Edward Lynch; son, Robert “Bobbie” Lynch in 1941; grandson, Lonnie Lynch; brothers, Rixon and Wendell Rafter; and sister, Alice Nearing. She is survived by her daughters, Beverly (Ed) Cramer of Chester, Lois (Bill) Gorder of Rudyard and Linda (Leonard) Olson of Spokane, Wash.; son, Ed “Tom” (Shirley) Lynch of Pensicola, Fla.; 13 grandchildren; 30 great-grandchildren; six great-great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews. Undesignated memorials will be given to the Rudyard Senior Citizen Center or Our Savior’s Lutheran Church. Arrangements are by Rockman Funeral Chapel in Chester.